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Do Migration Restrictions Matter?

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Author Info

  • Gustavo Ventura
  • Paul Klein

Abstract

Migration restrictions are pervasive and severe. Their worldwide enactment starting in the 1920's constituted a fundamental policy shift for a number of countries and for the world as whole. Yet, very little is currently known about the quantitative consequences of these barriers to labor mobility, and their significance vis-a-vis capital mobility. In this paper, we ask: quantitatively, what are the consequences for allocations and welfare of reducing or eliminating barriers to international migration? We answer this question in a life-cycle model of the world economy in which capital is endogenously accumulated, and both capital and labor are potentially mobile. Heterogeneous individuals decide when and whether to migrate given current and future prices. Output is produced using three inputs: capital, labor and land. The presence of a fixed factor (land) enables us to distinguish the effects of capital and labor mobility. Preliminary calculations show that restrictions do matter: their removal leads to significant increases in world's output and capital stock, and to sizeable increases in the welfare of natives of poor countries.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings with number 506.

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Date of creation: 11 Aug 2004
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Handle: RePEc:ecm:nawm04:506

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Related research

Keywords: Capital Mobility; Migration; Cross-Country Income Differences.;

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Cited by:
  1. Francesco Caselli, 2007. "The Marginal Product of Capital," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 535-568, 05.
  2. Clemens, Michael A. & Montenegro, Claudio E. & Pritchett, Lant, 2009. "The Place Premium: Wage Differences for Identical Workers Across the US Border," Scholarly Articles 4412631, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
  3. Ariel Burstein & Alexander Monge-Naranjo, 2007. "Foreign Know-How, Firm Control, and the Income of Developing Countries," NBER Working Papers 13073, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Francesc Ortega, 2004. "Immigration and the survival of the welfare state," Economics Working Papers 815, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  5. Francesco Caselli & James Feyrer, 2006. "The marginal product of capital," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3560, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  6. Eric Ng & John Whalley, 2008. "Visas and work permits: Possible global negotiating initiatives," The Review of International Organizations, Springer, vol. 3(3), pages 259-285, September.

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